4 Ways To Think Big But Act Small In Your Children’s Ministry

4 Ways To Think Big But Act Small In Your Children’s Ministry

Think Big But Act SmallWe all want to do big things in our ministry. We want to cast a big vision and see a big God bring big results. That?s the way most of us think, and that?s good!

But thinking big often results in missing what?s really important ? the little things that are the real fruit of our ministry. The little things that make a big difference and, when added up, bring the big impact.

It?s important that while we think big, we act small. Here are a few ideas:

Think Vision | Act Details

As leaders, we need to think beyond next Sunday. No, we don?t know exactly what will happen 6 mos. from now, or a year or 3 years. But if we don?t think in terms of vision, we?ll never accomplish it.

But successfully pursuing a great vision lies in the details. A house is built brick by brick, piece by piece, not all at once. Our vision will be accomplished as we tend to the details of that vision. We need to maintain a standard of excellence. We need to create systems & processes which facilitate our goals. We need to tend to individual needs as well as the collective needs of our kids, parents & volunteers.

Successfully managing details enables pursuit of a vision.

Think Program | Act People

Program is the structure within which we ?do? ministry. It?s essential, necessary and important. We need to plan carefully and build a program fit for the vision of our ministry & the church.

But program should never take priority over people. As we?ve said many times, ?ministry happens best through relationships”. So, while we need a solid program structure that clearly leads to our vision, we have to think in terms of the relationships that will make the big impact within that program structure. We need to think people (relationships) and create a culture that embraces this kind of thinking.

Think Equipping Parents | Act Engaging Kids

10?s, 100?s or 1000?s of kids come to our ministry every week. We are ?children?s” ministry. We have to engage kids in order to make that time with them count. This means we have to care for them (physical, spiritual & emotional safety), teach them age-appropriately, have a spiritual formation plan within the structure of our program, and much, much more. We have to act in terms of engaging kids while they are with us in the church environment.

But, ultimately, who is responsible for the spiritual formation of children? Parents. This means the church as a whole and, specifically, those of us in children?s ministry, need to think in those terms. The result is finding ways to partner with parents to connect what happens at church with what happens at home. It means resourcing parents and sharing a vision for their responsibility with their kids. It means equipping them through practical teaching. It means to find ways to do this not only for traditional families, but for broken or blended families, as well. They are the ones who will have the greatest spiritual impact in the lives of their children.

Think Leaders | Act Volunteers

Leadership matters in children?s ministry. Without it, forget about your big vision. You & I need to be growing as leaders and our team needs to be growing as leaders. We need to develop leaders and create a leadership culture within our ministries. Your ministry will only rise to the level that you & your leadership team can take it.

But our team also needs to be able to do ?the work of the ministry? (Ephesians 4:12). This means they need to be equipped – trained – to do the tasks that are involved with their role on the team. This might be teaching, or leading worship that engages kids, or taking care of the resource center. Whatever it is, they need to be equipped to do it.

Developing leaders & equipping volunteers go hand in hand.

Thinking big but acting small – both are important. Both matter. It is the leader that can do both that will lead a ministry to accomplishing a great vision in their church.

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Greg Baird
Founder of Children's Ministry Leader at Children's Ministry Leader
My passion is seeing the lives of children transformed. I believe the best way to do that is to equip leaders in the local church to serve children, volunteers and parents to invest in the lives of children at church and in the home. That?s what we do here at Children?s Ministry Leader ? equip leaders to create healthy Children?s & Family Ministry.
I serve as the Vice President of Global Resources in the Global Mission department at David C. Cook.

I love what I do as it is the outflow of 25 years of ministry experience as Children?s, Family & Administrative Pastor, consultant, trainer, speaker and short-term missions leader.

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Here’s a great resource to offer your families, created by our friends Sweet Sleep. And it’s free!

Check it out!

#VBS #SweetSleepWelcome to the Sweet Sleep Family Experience!
Join us this summer as we explore what life is like for children and families in Uganda. The program is designed to help families have fun experiences together, while learning some important truths about how God provides True Rest, and how we can learn to love and serve others as He calls us to do.

Check out our website for access to all of these FREE activities 🎉
sweetsleep.org/programs/familyexperience/
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Fun is not a 4-letter word. 🙂


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Stop begging trying to fill the needs in your ministry! IF people respond, it will likely be only short term. Obligatory service doesn’t inspire people to stick around.

Instead, understand the grand vision we are pursuing by investing in children’s lives for eternity!

Practice articulating that vision and start sharing it in every conversation. It’s a privilege and honor to be part of such important service, so INVITE people into that opportunity.

And, of course, never forget the foundation for building our team, found in Luke 10:2: “These were his [Jesus’] instructions to them: ‘The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.’”


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As the kids run to their waiting parents after church on Sunday morning, is that where the impact ends?

Or does the conversation continue at home throughout the week?

Hopefully the answer is the latter. If it’s not, it’s probably because we aren’t engaging and equipping parents to continue the conversation.

And that’s a problem.

Parents are the primary spiritual investors in a child’s life. Good or bad, this is almost always true.

As Children’s Ministry Leaders, our primary role ought to be to “equip God’s people” (Ephesians 4:12). In our case, I believe that means equip our team to invest in the children of our ministry, and to equip the parents of those children to continue the conversations at home.

If you aren’t engaging & equipping parents to continue the conversations that begin at church, then your ministry is incomplete.

If you are engaging and equipping parents, share an example in the comments of how you do that so the rest of us can learn from you.





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We always hear that children and youth are the church of tomorrow.

Yes, they are.

But they are also part of the church of today.

They are the group most receptive to the Gospel. They are the group most responsive to discipleship.

They also typically represent the largest group in the church, and the one with the most peripheral impact (volunteers, parents, etc).

They are the most vulnerable, physically, spiritually, emotionally and mentally.

Why on earth would we ever think we could “babysit” this group while “real ministry” happens with adults?

The truth is, many (most?) churches are not as healthy or strong as they could be because they lack a thriving focus on perhaps the very group that should receive the greatest focus.

You cannot have a healthy church without a healthy ministry to children and families.

Agree?






#KidMin #YouthMin #StuMin #ChildrensMinistry #FamMin #Pastors #Church #Ministry
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